I eat a lot of bacon. I don’t know if that means we can’t be friends anymore, but I just thought you should know. Gosh, I hope not. If we can’t get over our right to make our own food choices, how can we remain friends during an election year?

I can’t remember if you’re Vegan, Cabbage Soup, Vegetarian, Gluten-Free, Edenic, Subway, All-Organic, Pescetarian, Atkins, Weight Watchers, Paleo or what right now, but just know I think you’re awesome and I support your way of eating. We don’t have to talk about it, even though it’s all some people talk about. Like me, sometimes.

I have one friend that I text with and that is all we seem to talk about. Bacon. Seriously. Because she likes bacon as much as I do, and sometimes when you have something in common as deep as a love of salty pork meat, there really isn’t anything else TO talk about. And now when people come over for dinner, I’m that lady who, like your grandma used to do, keeps a tin can of bacon drippings on the stove and tells people, “Come over here and let me put a dab of this on your baked potato. You’ll like it! It’s delicious!” Just kidding. I don’t eat baked potatoes. I cook my chard and spinach in it.

Before I started eating less grains and more bacon, I had no idea there were people patrolling the world, assuming the title of Bacon Police, and to them I flip the silent bird and say a resounding, “Whatevs.” My inflammation has gone down to virtually 0, I feel energetic and I’m finally starting to lose weight. I will continue to eat this way until/if it doesn’t work any longer. Until then, thank you Bacon Heaven and may we all be so lucky to find our own Heavens, be they Bacon, Chicken Salad, Flying Spaghetti Monster or Veganaise, Amen.

Speaking of elections and politics and women’s bodies and Mormons and conservatives and liberals and families are forever and equal rights and gay marriage and “legitimate rapes” and right to choose and taxes and gun control and *pop* that was my brain and yes, it’s true, I may be skipping a lot of your Facebook posts right now because I’d like to love you through eternity if we’re all lucky and it turns out Mormon heaven exists, but I still LIKElike you, you know. We’re family and friends and we will continue to be family and friends beyond this year regardless of the outcome of this election, just like we have the last 41 years of my life.

Let’s not say things to each other we can’t take back. Let’s avoid drive-by commenting and tossing flaming zingers at each other. Let’s endeavor to say things in ways that are well thought-out and constructive and productive instead of inflammatory for the sake of being incendiary. Getting a rise out of me for a moment might make you feel better righthisinstant, but it’s not worth our friendship, is it? If we, the two of us, can agree to disagree and have an honest debate and come to some kind of meeting of the minds, see each others point’s of view, even when we don’t agree, then there is truly hope for our nation. If we two can do it, we can all do it.

To keep busy while I haven’t been Facebooking, I’ve been making things and organizing. Longtime readers would be right in thinking a manic episode is probably creeping along. I’m not worried. I’m along for the ride, as always. Worrying and stressing and the anxiety-riddled road lead to nowhere good. The illusion of being in control of my mind left me long ago. Every day is a surprise. Hopefully things don’t go too far up and then go too far down.

On the highs as of late – I went swimming in the ocean and in the pool for the first time in a long, long time, overcoming my fear of things under my feet where I cannot see them and things in the pool water where I can see them.

I rode public transportation, which is notable for three reasons: 1. I did it by myself, which is panic-inducing as I have a very real fear (based on past experience) of getting turned around, lost and assaulted/raped (not to be confused with “*eyeroll* non-legitimate raped */eyeroll*”). 2. I did it without any hand sanitizer or wet wipes for the GERMS and subsequently did not look like a crazy person wiping down my seat and handrails before touching/sitting down. (I did some thorough washing when I got home, however. Ahem.) 3. I did it after showing up in person for jury duty, which yes, caused me a three day panic attack and much, MUCH weeping and breathing exercises beforehand, to the point where Joe was automatically patting me on the head and saying, “there, there,” every time he walked in and out of a room, but I showed up. (I did weigh the pros and cons of not showing up more than once and may have looked up the ramifications of being a no-show, (the penalty for contempt of court is $1,500, jail time or both.) not because I didn’t want to do my civic duty, to the contrary, I’m fascinated by our government and very much wanted to know how it works and be a part of it, but because unknown experiences with people in authority paralyze me and make me vomit. Literally.)

So, I didn’t sleep the night before. The morning of, I ate a few bites of eggs and drank some coffee. Joe drove me to the Hall of Justice. I checked in. I threw up some eggs and coffee. I watched a video where real people pretended to be fake jurors, tried to read a book for hours and wiped my sweaty palms on my pants and did my best impression of a normal person until they called my name and assigned me a courtroom. And then I died but miraculously walked over to courtroom 17. I wondered how I would do this every day if this case went on and on. Then they excused us for lunch and I paid $15 for a ground beef patty I ate three bites of before admitting defeat. I went back to courtroom 17 about 45 minutes early and sat nervously outside the door on a hard wooden bench, waiting for them to call us inside. But instead, they told us our case was dismissed and thanked us, told us we could go home. Then I walked outside in the sunshine, sparkled like a Cullen, got lost for only 10 minutes while I pretended I meant to walk back and forth in front of the same strip of buildings three times BECAUSE THAT’S HOW I DO, OK GUY WITH A DOG WHO ISN’T EVEN LOOKING AT ME?! before finding the trolley, then made it home like a normal person would. Then I threw up again, cried for about four hours, ordered a gluten-free pizza, ate it all and went to bed at 7:30pm before Joe even got home from work.

So, small victories this past month. Yay, me.

One last thing before I go. The bright, shiny, electric elephant in the room. I’ve sent you an email. One that requires a response in a timely manner for an occasion coming up or I asked you a question about something that maybe you don’t want to answer but you don’t want to say so or you’re busy and you haven’t had time to answer so I’ve become a “Have-to.” And here’s what I’ve noticed – suddenly we can’t communicate about anything else. It’s like all communication has to be shut down because of that one email. That one stupid email that’s just sitting like a hot turd in your inbox, like a radioactive bomb. You avoid me everywhere else because if you look at me or acknowledge my presence, you think I’m going to jump on you and yell WHAT ABOUT THAT EMAIL, but I swear I’m not, and also? I miss you.

And now I wish I could take that email back if it means we could just go back to things being easy between us again. I miss the old us. Forget I sent it. Forget I asked. Let’s just move on. Never talk about it again or even for the first time.

Let’s go back to cracking sarcastic jokes on Twitter. Let’s run into each other at the grocery store and make eye contact and go for coffee while the frozen veggies defrost in the car and not care. Let’s talk on the phone for an hour about nothing while I scrub the tub with one hand and complain about the grout that won’t come clean and declare I won’t put on pants all day.

I don’t even like email. I miss your face.

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